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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

We cannot continue to believe we are the greatest nation in the world.

The United States can't keep carelessly flexing its muscles simply because it does not have the strength or the global standing it did back in the 1950s.

American forces have recently docked a Navy ship in a battle-ridden port of Georgia. Granted, the purpose of this ship was to provide aid for the devastated country, but that is a purpose to be served by the United Nations.

Sending U.S. Navy ships to such a controversial port is highly irresponsible considering the tumultuous nature of the Russian-American past and the increasing aggressiveness of its current relations.

It is not the landing of a Navy ship in Georgia that is controversial; it's the ship's origin. If it were an English, French or Canadian ship, the result would be much less contentious.

American officials should know that. Russians have been quoted as saying they feel threatened by what can be taken as an act of aggression by the Americans. This U.S. action has only opened the doors for Russia to deploy naval forces to the Caribbean with the excuse of balancing the situation.

The Venezuelan government confirmed Sunday that Russia will be deploying airplanes and battleships to its ports along the Caribbean, one of which is a battleship dubbed "the battleship destroyer" that is almost twice as large as any American ship.

This serves as a sign and a challenge that the U.S. is no longer the only superpower.

As a direct challenge to American influence and strength, longtime American antagonist and communist Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez was quoted saying, "Go ahead and squeal, Yankees."

Obviously, this is an insult and a direct belittlement of the United States' standing within the region. Such aggression from foreign countries is a sign that the U.S., in its ailing and troubled state, seems weak and vulnerable to its foreign adversaries and is now increasingly in a position of great danger.

In troubled times like these, the U.S. government should take greater strides to practice a more humble diplomatic policy, lest we find ourselves in the middle of a second Cold War.

It was not so long ago we made it out of the first Cold War safe and sound, and it seems as if we have already forgotten its lessons.

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The truth is that our state is far from ideal. We are much more unstable and uncertain than we would like to think.

Our economy is steadily falling; the unemployment rate is rising higher and higher; and our resources seem to be spreading thinner every week. We don't have enough money to give our children a proper education or to provide our less fortunate citizens with health care because, in the face of an ailing economy, we spend billions every year on wars we should not be involved in.

It's certainly not the time to be rattling our battle sabers.

The U.S. is carrying a big stick and needs to recognize it's walking on thin ice. We should practice a much humbler policy for the time being because, given our current state of affairs, it isn't as certain that we would fare too well in a second Cold War.

Rafael Sabbagh is a first-year philosophy student.

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